Burch, Lucius Edward (1874-1959)

 Digital Record
Identifier: 1086
Burch, Lucius Edward (1874-1959)


  • 1939 - 1959

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Historical or Biographical Note

Lucius E. Burch was born in Nashville, the son of a former Confederate officer and secretary of the US Senate. He graduated from the Webb School in Bell Buckle, TN and was a star football player at Vanderbilt in the 1890's. Receiving his M.D. Degree in 1896, Dr. Burch practiced briefly in Bear Spring, TN before studying surgery at St. George's Hospital in London. Dr. Burch joined the Vanderbilt School of Medicine in 1904 as Professor of Gynecology. Ten years later, he was appointed dean. After service in France during WWI, he returned to play a key role in the transition between the old medical school and the new one. While supporting the changes proposed by Chancellor Kirkland and Dean-Elect G. Canby Robinson (a new medical school and hospital on the west campus and introduction of a full-time faculty), Dr. Burch upheld the position of the old, local, part-time faculty), "who had made the school." Dr. Hugh Morgan later called him " the one person to whom all faculty members of good will could rally-regardless of whether they belonged to the old faculty or the new." On retiring as dean in 1925, Dr. Burch was appointed chairman of Vanderbilt's Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, where he served another twenty years. In addition, he continued an active private practice. Dr. Burch served as editor of the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology and was elected president of the Southern Surgical Association.

The Eskind Library holds Dr. Burch's diaries, 1921--1959, which are an intimate portrait of a remarkable gentleman.

Language of Materials



Biographical file includes many photographs and reprints, academic articles and sketches profiling Dr. Burch, several news clippings, an obituary, correspondence, and a summary of the contents of Dr. Burch's diaries, 1921-1959.

Repository Details

Part of the VUMC Historical Images and Biographies Repository

Eskind Biomedical Library
2209 Garland Ave.
Nashville TN 37232


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